Lisa Portolan will be in conversation with ABC Radio National‘s Antony Funnell at Avid Reader on Friday 8 June to discuss her new book Happy As: Why the quest for happiness is making us miserable.

In this book, Lisa explores the idea that everyone wants to be happy, but it could be the relentless quest for that elusive state of being actually making individuals unhappy. In a world where data is the new currency, social media is turning us all into walking, talking billboards and brands and we’re meant to be mindful, manifesting and present, Lisa wonders if it is a bit rich to be expected to be happy too. After a lifetime spent actively searching for happiness as well as studying it, the communications executive and yogi shares valuable insights into how we made happiness a science and an industry, created products around it and supported it with a whole heap of advertising to ensure that works, but whether “brand me” is a recipe for unhappiness.

Australian political journalist Paul Bongiorno AM says of the book, “A big call, but coming from a practitioner of the dark arts of advertising and persuasion Lisa’s insights are surprising and enlightening.” Australian comedian and film director Tim Ferguson says, “Lisa Portolan’s fascinating exploration of happiness reveals fresh insights into this much-lauded but little-examined condition. Startling in its insight and surprising in its scale, Happy As sheds light into the darker corners of people’s search for joy. And, oddly enough, it is an unbridled joy to read.”

Lisa is a communications and marketing professional who has worked on many large-scale advertising campaigns and industry rebrands. She is also a freelance journalist whose articles have been widely published in magazines and blogs, including Huffington Post, Mamamia, Elephant Journal, Yoga Anonymous, Rebelle Society and HerCanberra.

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